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5 Emotions That Successful Entrepreneurs Never Feel

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5 Emotions That Successful Entrepreneurs Never Feel

When you become a successful entrepreneur, you represent a group of people who create value for the world by seeing solutions where others see nothing. Where back in the old days, people would try and turn lead into gold, modern day entrepreneurs turn 0’s and 1’s into an app that can solve a real problem.

Human emotions can empower. They can also disable. The key to success is sifting out the emotions that give you strength and throwing away the ones that get in the way of progress. Here are the five emotions that successful entrepreneurs become skilled at getting rid of to protect their ability to create value.

1. Jealousy

Entrepreneurs aren’t jealous. They see the success of their colleagues as validation of hard work. The smarter ones will look at what they are specifically doing different that makes them successful – market, product, advertising, etc – and seek to emulate it.

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People who are jealous, actually admit that they will never be as successful as the person they are jealous of. No one will tell you that, but it’s the truth about jealousy. It represents deep insecurity that disables you from performing better and seeking the life that you want.

If you can be genuinely happy for someone who is successful, you can be one step closer at success yourself.

2. Despair

In the dictionary, despair is defined as being “the complete loss or absence of hope”. Entrepreneurs are quintessentially about hope. Without hope, there isn’t possibility. Their ideas would never make it beyond the drawing board.

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This isn’t to say that entrepreneurs don’t lose hope sometimes. They are human, after all. However, entrepreneurs are unable to completely drain their “hope gauge”. No matter what knocks them down, they will always get back up. If not immediately, eventually.

3. Apathy

Apathy basically means not caring at all about something. It means that no matter what happens, whether good nor bad, you have no emotional investment attached to it. This can be a good thing for entrepreneurs. If they don’t care about the result, they can focus on doing meaningful work.

Having said this, entrepreneurs build things to solve problems. Apathy can be a destructive emotion because it can drain the energy and passion away from a venture. People who work with you in the venture may leave, seeing that their fearless leader is more of a “meh” leader.

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Entrepreneurs are caring people. They might not seem that way at face value, but without care, they would not go to great lengths to solve the world’s problems.

4. Disappointment

Disappointment is another very common emotion. People get disappointed all the time: in other people, in situations out of their control, in themselves. As an entrepreneur myself, I would be lying if I said that I didn’t feel disappointment. In fact, I feel it on a daily basis.

What sets entrepreneurs apart from other people is that entrepreneurs do something with their disappointment. They make it constructive. They turn it into an opportunity for growth. For example, I’ve started a “disappointment journal” where I list the things that disappoint me. What’s been fascinating is realizing these things often aren’t big deals and that I’m silly for wasting energy on it in the first place.

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It’s an emotion that has to be weaned out of the human system. Only then can you be as effective as a successful entrepreneur.

5. Worry

Entrepreneurs have at least double the number of things to worry about, compared to “regular” people. Some entrepreneurs let worries drive them into the ground. The emotionally and physically collapse one day and need to take a couple months off. The weight of worries crushes them.

Other entrepreneurs – ones who are more experienced and durable against the weight of worry – realize that worrying is placing a bet against themselves. There is literally no point worrying. It takes away precious energy that should be focused on value creation. Worrying doesn’t decrease the chance of bad things happening either. So why worry?

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If you can purge yourself of these five troublesome emotions, you can quickly be on your way to becoming a successful entrepreneur. It takes effort, but it’s worth it.

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Last Updated on October 21, 2021

How to Create Your Own Ritual to Conquer Time Wasters and Laziness

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How to Create Your Own Ritual to Conquer Time Wasters and Laziness

Life is wasted in the in-between times. The time between when your alarm first rings and when you finally decide to get out of bed. The time between when you sit at your desk and when productive work begins. The time between making a decision and doing something about it.

Slowly, your day is whittled away from all the unused in-between moments. Eventually, time wasters, laziness, and procrastination get the better of you.

The solution to reclaim these lost middle moments is by creating rituals. Every culture on earth uses rituals to transfer information and encode behaviors that are deemed important. Personal rituals can help you build a better pattern for handling everything from how you wake up to how you work.

Unfortunately, when most people see rituals, they see pointless superstitions. Indeed, many rituals are based on a primitive understanding of the world. But by building personal rituals, you get to encode the behaviors you feel are important and cut out the wasted middle moments.

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Program Your Own Algorithms

Another way of viewing rituals is by seeing them as computer algorithms. An algorithm is a set of instructions that is repeated to get a result.

Some algorithms are highly efficient, sorting or searching millions of pieces of data in a few seconds. Other algorithms are bulky and awkward, taking hours to do the same task.

By forming rituals, you are building algorithms for your behavior. Take the delayed and painful pattern of waking up, debating whether to sleep in for another two minutes, hitting the snooze button, repeat until almost late for work. This could be reprogrammed to get out of bed immediately, without debating your decision.

How to Form a Ritual

I’ve set up personal rituals for myself for handling e-mail, waking up each morning, writing articles, and reading books. Far from making me inflexible, these rituals give me a useful default pattern that works best 99% of the time. Whenever my current ritual won’t work, I’m always free to stop using it.

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Forming a ritual isn’t too difficult, and the same principles for changing habits apply:

  1. Write out your sequence of behavior. I suggest starting with a simple ritual of only 3-4 steps maximum. Wait until you’ve established a ritual before you try to add new steps.
  2. Commit to following your ritual for thirty days. This step will take the idea and condition it into your nervous system as a habit.
  3. Define a clear trigger. When does your ritual start? A ritual to wake up is easy—the sound of your alarm clock will work. As for what triggers you to go to the gym, read a book or answer e-mail—you’ll have to decide.
  4. Tweak the Pattern. Your algorithm probably won’t be perfectly efficient the first time. Making a few tweaks after the first 30-day trial can make your ritual more useful.

Ways to Use a Ritual

Based on the above ideas, here are some ways you could implement your own rituals:

1. Waking Up

Set up a morning ritual for when you wake up and the next few things you do immediately afterward. To combat the grogginess after immediately waking up, my solution is to do a few pushups right after getting out of bed. After that, I sneak in ninety minutes of reading before getting ready for morning classes.

2. Web Usage

How often do you answer e-mail, look at Google Reader, or check Facebook each day? I found by taking all my daily internet needs and compressing them into one, highly-efficient ritual, I was able to cut off 75% of my web time without losing any communication.

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3. Reading

How much time do you get to read books? If your library isn’t as large as you’d like, you might want to consider the rituals you use for reading. Programming a few steps to trigger yourself to read instead of watching television or during a break in your day can chew through dozens of books each year.

4. Friendliness

Rituals can also help with communication. Set up a ritual of starting a conversation when you have opportunities to meet people.

5. Working

One of the hardest barriers when overcoming procrastination is building up a concentrated flow. Building those steps into a ritual can allow you to quickly start working or continue working after an interruption.

6. Going to the gym

If exercising is a struggle, encoding a ritual can remove a lot of the difficulty. Set up a quick ritual for going to exercise right after work or when you wake up.

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7. Exercise

Even within your workouts, you can have rituals. Spacing the time between runs or reps with a certain number of breaths can remove the guesswork. Forming a ritual of doing certain exercises in a particular order can save time.

8. Sleeping

Form a calming ritual in the last 30-60 minutes of your day before you go to bed. This will help slow yourself down and make falling asleep much easier. Especially if you plan to get up full of energy in the morning, it will help if you remove insomnia.

8. Weekly Reviews

The weekly review is a big part of the GTD system. By making a simple ritual checklist for my weekly review, I can get the most out of this exercise in less time. Originally, I did holistic reviews where I wrote my thoughts on the week and progress as a whole. Now, I narrow my focus toward specific plans, ideas, and measurements.

Final Thoughts

We all want to be productive. But time wasters, procrastination, and laziness sometimes get the better of us. If you’re facing such difficulties, don’t be afraid to make use of these rituals to help you conquer them.

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Featured photo credit: RODOLFO BARRETO via unsplash.com

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